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Ther Clin Risk Manag. 2009 Feb;5(1):261-70. Epub 2009 Mar 26.

Recombinant human epoetin beta in the treatment of chemotherapy-related anemia.

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Beatson West of Scotland Cancer Centre, Glasgow, United Kingdom.


Anemia is a common complication of systemic anti-cancer treatment. In this context epoetin beta, like other erythropoiesis-stimulating agents (ESAs), has demonstrable efficacy in raising Hb concentration and reducing the requirement for red cell transfusion. Consequently ESA therapy has gained increasing prominence in the management of chemotherapy-related anemia. However, recent trial data have suggested a higher rate of thromboembolic events, enhanced tumor progression and reduced survival in some patients with cancer who receive ESA therapy. In response, regulatory authorities have mandated increasingly restrictive label changes. In light of these new developments we consider the current role of epoetin beta in the management of chemotherapy-related anemia.

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